Additional Services

Penn-Hip

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What is PennHIP?

 

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PennHIP is a multifaceted radiographic screening method for hip evaluation. The technique assesses the quality of the canine hip and quantitatively measures canine hip joint laxity. The PennHIP method of evaluation is more accurate than the current standard in its ability to predict the onset of osteoarthritis (OA). Osteoarthritis, also known as degenerative joint disease (DJD), is the hallmark of hip dysplasia (HD).

PennHIP is more than just a radiographic technique. It is also a network of veterinarians trained to perform the PennHIP methodology properly and, perhaps most importantly, it is a large scientific database that houses the PennHIP data. Radiographs are made by certified PennHIP members worldwide and are sent to the PennHIP Analysis Center for evaluation. The resulting data is stored in the database, which is continually monitored as it expands. As more information becomes available, the PennHIP laboratory is able to obtain more precise answers to questions about the etiology, prediction and genetic basis of hip dysplasia.

PennHIP publishes its findings in scientific journals. Published information is disseminated to all PennHIP members; it is also shared with interested breed clubs and routinely appears in publications within the dog fancy.

 

PennHIP is composed of three major components:

  • A diagnostic radiographic technique
  • A network of trained veterinarians
  • A medical database for scientific analysis

PennHIP at a Glance

The PennHIP method is a novel way to assess, measure and interpret hip joint laxity. It consists of three separate radiographs: the distraction view, the compression view and the hip-extended view. The distraction view and compression view are used to obtain accurate and precise measurements of joint laxity and congruity. The hip-extended view is used to obtain supplementary information regarding the existence of osteoarthritis (OA)  of the hip joint. (The hip-extended view is the conventional radiographic view used to evaluate the integrity of the canine hip joint.) The PennHIP technique is more accurate than the current standard, and it has been shown to be a better predictor for the onset of OA.

The radiographs pictured here are of the same dog, yet the hip joint laxties in each view look very different. Notice that the hips in the distraction view appear to be much looser than they do in the hip-extended view.

Distraction View Compression View Hip-Extended View

The obvious contrast in joint laxity between the distraction and hip-extended views demonstrates the fundamental difference between the two radiographs. The looser the joint on the distraction view, the greater is the chance that the hip will develop OA. The hip-extended view tends to mask true hip joint laxity because the joint capsule is wound up into a tightened orientation when the hips are extended. This explains why measurable joint laxity on the distraction view is always greater than the measurable laxity from the hip-extended view. In fact, distraction laxity is up to 11 times greater depending on the breed of dog under study.

The compression view is used to determine the “goodness of fit” of the femoral heads into the acetabula. In a hip with OA, the remodeling that occurs in the acetabulum and/or the femoral head, will often result in an ill-fitting “ball” and “socket”.

To summarize, PennHIP method:
  • Obtains OA readings from the standard hip-extended view
  • Obtains hip joint congruity readings from the compression view
  • Obtains quantitative measurements of hip joint laxity from the distraction view
 A Brief History

In 1983, Dr. Gail Smith conceived and developed a new scientific method for the early diagnosis of CHD while at the University of Pennsylvanina School of Veterinary Medicine. Research conducted in his laboratory proved the diagnostic method to be capable of estimating the susceptibility for CHD in dogs as young as sixteen weeks of age. In 1993, Dr. Smith established PennHIP, a cooperative scientific initiative, to serve as a multi-center clinical trial of the new hip dysplasia diagnostic technology. PennHIP has recently been acquired by Antech Diagnostics, Inc.

Hospice And Euthanasia Services

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Are you having problems caring for a terminally ill pet at home? Does your pet have a medical condition that is painful or causing poor quality of life? Are you afraid that your sick or elderly pet is suffering?

Our staff of compassionate, caring professionals can help you through this painful experience. We offer hospice services and will work with you to ensure your pet’s comfort and dignity during his or her last days and final moments. Do you have special requests? Do you have questions about care of your pet’s remains? We can help you with these concerns and will make every effort to accommodate your wishes at this very difficult time.

Deciding when your pet may need hospice care or euthanasia is a very personal and private decision, but that doesn’t mean you have to make this difficult choice on your own. Our hospice and humane euthanasia services are conducted with respect, compassion, and care. Before you struggle through one more day with a sick, elderly, or terminally ill pet that is suffering, call us to learn how we can help.

Pharmacy

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You and your pet will benefit from our well-stocked pharmacy. We maintain a large inventory of veterinary pharmaceutical products and medications, including flea, tick, and heartworm preventive products. You can rely on us whether your pet requires medication for a chronic medical condition or needs short-term medication while recovering from an illness, injury, or surgery. When you purchase medications from our pharmacy, you can rest assured that your pet’s medications were obtained from safe, reliable sources and stored under optimal conditions. Our trained staff will fill your prescriptions with care as well as attention to detail and your pet’s specific needs. You can count on us to provide you with accurate information about your pet’s medications, including proper dosing information, and to alert you to any potential drug side effects or interactions. We are also here if you experience any problems with your medication after you return home. Help is only a phone call away!

If you want to be sure to get the most value for your dollars, as well as convenience and the best customer service, call us for your next prescription or medication refill. We are pleased to provide our clients with a fully stocked pharmacy, and we stand behind every product that we dispense.

Laser Therapy

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Laser therapy has a broad range of uses in veterinary medicine, from expanding surgical options, to promoting wound and tissue healing, to enhancing physical therapy results. In our continuing effort to offer the highest-quality medicine to all our patients, we are proud to provide laser therapy supervised by our expert health care team.

As a cutting-edge medical advance, laser therapy requires a highly skilled and dedicated staff. Fortunately, our health care team is experienced in laser therapy and committed to maintaining the highest standards of safety and overall care. Our staff has been extensively trained and will handle your pet with care and compassion, so rest assured that your pet will receive the very best care in our state-of-the-art medical facility.

Does your pet have a medical or surgical condition that may benefit from laser therapy? Call us to learn how we may be able to help.

Veterinary Specialist Referrals

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Our experienced team of veterinarians and veterinary technicians provides many services at our clinic, ranging from routine to advanced procedures. Although we handle the majority of your pet’s medical and surgical needs in-house, we occasionally refer patients to veterinary specialists or specialty clinics when advanced training or equipment will be beneficial.

Board-certified specialists, such as oncologists, ophthalmologists, and neurologists, have extensive experience and training in a particular area of veterinary medicine or surgery. Specialty clinics and university-affiliated referral centers have specialized equipment to perform procedures that are not routinely performed by general veterinary practitioners.

We make referral decisions because we want to ensure that our patients receive the highest standard of care and best possible outcome. Be assured that when we refer a patient to another hospital, we continue to stay involved with his or her care, consulting with the treating specialist and often providing any needed follow-up care and rehabilitation.

Behavioral Counseling

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If you’re concerned about or bothered by an aspect of your pet’s behavior, we can help. Our expert can work with you and your pet to stop or change the behavior. Many aggressive, fearful, or inappropriate behaviors in dogs and cats can be modified through a combination of desensitization and counter-conditioning. These techniques can have dramatic results when applied properly. In some cases, medication can also help. Contact us for an appointment if you’d like to consult with our expert.

Microchip Pet Identification

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Imagine if your dog or cat got lost. You’d want to give him or her the best chance of getting home. With microchipping, you can.

Microchipping is a safe, permanent way to identify your pet in case he or she becomes lost. A microchip, which is a tiny device about the size and shape of a grain of rice, is placed just under the loose skin at the back of the neck. When a lost dog or cat without an ID tag is found, a veterinarian or veterinary technician will use a handheld microchip scanner to check for a chip. If the pet has one, it will transmit its ID number to the scanner via a low-frequency radio wave. The veterinary hospital or shelter then calls the chip manufacturer, retrieves the pet owner’s contact information, and calls the owner.

Even the most responsible pet owners can’t always guarantee their pet won’t get lost. A leash could break or slip out of your hand, a pet could push through a screen door or window, or a contractor or friend might accidentally leave a door or gate open.

We recommend that you use a microchip, along with a collar and ID tag, to identify your pet. An ID tag is still a reliable identification method. Pets that have tags with current contact information are more likely to not end up in shelters and tend to get home faster than those without tags. However, collars and ID tags aren’t permanent and can be removed (overnight or for grooming); pets can also lose them. With a microchip, your pet will have a much better chance of being identified and returned to you. Pets without microchips that end up in shelters may be adopted out to another family or even euthanized.

Please contact us to schedule an appointment to microchip your pet. Although we hope your pet never becomes lost, we want you to be prepared. We can also suggest a plan to have in place so if your pet does go missing, you’ll be able to act quickly.

We can microchip ferrets, rabbits, birds, and other companion animals, too!